Dogtown: Don’t over-console your pet during the ‘end of the world’

The Fourth of July, or as some pets call it, “the end of the world,” is just a day away. I ran a few tips for keeping your animals safe last week. Here are a few more. 

Fireworks and matches can be toxic to pets so make sure all the garbage gets swept up and disposed of right away. Other potential dangers to pets include citronella candles, kebab skewers, and lighter fluid, plus alcohol, chocolate, grapes and other foods that partiers might be tempted to share.

At our house we practice acknowledging the scary noises – “Yep, that was a loud one” – without a lot of petting or consoling. Granted this does not work for everyone, but many dogs seem to be reassured when their human is calm. 

It’s worth adding to your repertoire of Fourth of July crisis management. It can be helpful in a variety of situations where dogs are spooked and is the opposite of holding them tight, petting them, and saying “It’s OK,” which can reinforce fearful behavior.

The Humboldt County Animal Shelter will be closed on July 4 but fortunately, they will be open again on Friday. I hope that none of my readers need their services for a lost pet, but just in case, it’s good to know. Of course, Friday could be a good time to come and look at our adoptable dogs and cats also. After all, the Fourth of July will be behind you for another year.


One fun young dog that is currently available is Harley. Harley is a 1-year-old female dog, believed to be an Anatolian Shepherd mix. She is a big, gentle girl, very curious about the world around her. 

Harley walks well on the leash, knows “sit” and “shake” and cocks her head to the side when you talk to her! She is just a big puppy still and loves to play ball. Harley has been nicely behaved around the children that she has met and we believe that she would make an excellent family dog. 

She is very affectionate and loves to be petted and brushed. This dog is very charming and won’t be available for long! She is spayed, microchipped and current on vaccinations. 

Come meet Harley at the Humboldt County Animal Shelter, located at 980 Lycoming Ave. in McKinleyville. More information is available at or by calling (707) 840-9132.

Randy, aka Watchey

Redwood Pals Rescue has a big puppy also. His name is Randy, aka Watchey, and was featured here once before. Randy is just a little over a year old and is a hound mix of some sort. 

We wonder if he might have a little Shar Pei in his mix also due to the wrinkles on his forehead. Randy is being fostered out in Shelter Cove and he is loving the country life! 

He behaves well in the house, but his favorite spot is lounging on the porch in the sunshine. When he first arrived at his foster home with a bucket of new toys, he carefully carried them one by one up to his spot on the deck. He enjoys belly rubs and the occasional game of chase with his foster human. He doesn’t care to swim or play ball but does like a good chewy after his run around the yard.

 There is a resident cat and Randy’s not above giving chase once in a while, but isn’t obsessed with it. He would make a fine dog for country living and is a great companion. 

He will alert to people or animals approaching the house and is good at keeping visiting wildlife out of the yard. Randy is neutered and current on his vaccinations and can be microchipped at adoption. He can come into town for a meet and greet or you can meet him at his country digs. Email us at r[email protected] or leave a voicemail at (707) 633-8842 for more information.


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